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Railroad Employee Accidents

The Federal Employers’ Liability Act (FELA) is a law passed by the government in 1908 to protect railroad workers injured in railroad accidents.  Designed to calm public anger over the devastating injuries and loss of life on the rails, the law gives engineers, brakemen, switchmen and other railroad employees the right to sue for on-the-job injuries in state or federal courts.  Over the years the railroad law has been strengthened, both by Congress and U.S. Supreme Court decisions, to provide real protection to injured railroad employees.

The FELA is different from other laws, such as state worker’s compensation laws and state automobile personal injury laws.  Damages are based on your individual loss, including lost wages (past, present and future), pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life.  However, in order to win your case and recover under the FELA, you need to show that some negligence by the railroad caused your injury.  Essentially, you need to show that the railroad failed to provide a reasonably safe place to work.  If you or someone you know was injured while employed by a Railroad, you should contact a personal injury attorney soon after the accident to secure your rights to compensation for your injuries.  For more information, visit our section on Railroad Injuries.

An Overview of the Federal Employers Liability Act

Federal Employers Liability Act FAQs